ChauKei Ngai

ChauKei Ngai

Founding Director

ChauKei (pronounced chow kay) was born without breath, and yoga gave it back to her. Born in Hong Kong two months early and weighing only four pounds, her lungs weren’t ready for the world. A mechanical ventilator and extra oxygen kept her alive for her first thirty days. Her parents named her ChauKei, “The Miracle in the Fall,” and prayed.

Blessedly, she survived, but breathing remained frightening to young ChauKei. She would gasp and struggle for air, feeling breathless. At some point in every year, from her early childhood until her 20′s, this required trips to the emergency room for supplemental oxygen. Extreme chest pains came along with the breathlessness, and ChauKei lived in dread of the next attack until, in 2005, she attended her first yoga class and never turned back. She had had her last attack of breathlessness and had found her life’s passion.

ChauKei is now a modern yogini, she grew up in Canada graduated in Psychology in York University, recently moved back to Hong Kong which is one of the places she called home. She studied in Yoga Therapy and Ayurvedic medicine, Bikram Yoga, and Ana Forrest Yoga. She has been teaching yoga worldwide since 2006. In 2013, she won the prestigious International Yoga Sports Federation Championship, the world’s largest international yoga competition with participants from over 25 countries. A two time Silver medalist and one time Bronze medalist Chaukei became the first champion to have earned all three medals. Just as significant is the fact that she became the first mother to become World Yoga Champion. You will find her teaching in her charming studio YogaUP in Discovery Bay, Hong Kong.


Beagle started his yoga journey in 2012, deeply understands the benefits of yoga for the body and mind. He completed 200hrs teacher training certifications with Yoga Master Samrat Dasgupta in 2015, after that he continued studying mindfulness yin yoga with Chris Su.

He likes to share the details which learned from the past in the class and mainly guide students to let the breath and asana connect, and gradually open the body, focusing on body, mind & spiritual balance!

Cecile Trentini

Working in the organic food industry since she’s in Hong-Kong, Cecile believes that our body is a temple that fully rewards us when taken care of.

Physical exercise has always been in her life, and she found different interests in every sport she practiced: as a classical dancer for fifteen years she was fond of the beauty and grace of movements, she enjoyed the sweat when running, she found swimming was a great way to still her mind. No wonder that the first time she stepped into a yoga studio she’s been instantly hooked, as she finds yoga not only encompasses all those benefits but also goes far beyond, reaching our minds and allowing an unending process of self-discovery.
Cecile completed the 200 hours yoga training with ChauKei Ngai at YogaUP in early 2018 because she wanted to offer others what she received. She thinks that flexibility, strength, and balance are the three main assets of yoga practice everyone can improve, no matter one’s starting point. Cecile feels deeply grateful to be able to help the students in their own path of self-transformation of their body and mind.

Eva Kunyi

Exercise has always been a part of Eva’s life. She’s passionate about running, hiking, boxing.

Her yoga journal started on May 2015 in Anahata Yoga Studio in Hong Kong. She immediately noticed a physical and mental change.

As she began to feel the transformation that yoga had in her life, she felt inspired to share the gift of yoga with others. Eva completed the 200 hours Yoga Teacher Training in Anahata Yoga in December 2015. She also specialized in Holistic massage a relaxation technique to bring harmony and healing to the body/mind/spirit.

She also volunteers to teach every Sunday to overseas domestic helpers. Passionate about cooking healthy dishes and exploring making recipes healthier. Eva likes to share her passion for yoga with others by doing classes and teaching her kids in her spare time.

Johanna Chan

Johanna Chan

Johanna’s mission is to spread the healing power and joy of practicing yoga. She envisions a world without pain, inside and out. Yoga to her is a temple where we honor our mind, body, and soul through a dedicated practice. She teaches to motivate students to come in, work hard, and leave with a smile on their face.

Her first 90 minutes of Bikram Yoga ended with a fever. After feeling her junk spine and joints in front of the mirror, she began craving for her next class. She started practicing Bikram Yoga in Florida since she first discovered it in 2007, thanks to her brother. Since then, yoga has become a quintessential part of her life.
Johanna graduated from Babson College studying strategic management and started corporate life in retail consulting.

She moved back to Hong Kong in 2013 from Boston only to find no Bikram Yoga classes in her hometown. Motivated by her mentor Maria McBride in Boston, she attended the Fall 2013 teacher training in Los Angeles. A year later, she started a Bikram Yoga studio in Beijing and a start-up in Hong Kong.

The original hot yoga has changed her life developing the inner strength she never thought she could possibly achieve. Johanna encourages everyone to try it with an open heart, it’s never too late to start from scratch!

Lucas Renzi

Lucas is a lifelong student and teacher with a career straddling both movement and education. Although new to yoga, Lucas brings his experience as a personal fitness coach, judo instructor, primary school teacher and father to his practice.

In 2017 Lucas sought out yoga while living in Hong Kong because, while expat life can be exciting it can also be lonely and frustrating, and he saw yoga as a possible solution. Yoga has helped him find great friends, feel calmer, and he notes that especially when you start a yoga practice, he loves the feeling that you’re constantly discovering your own hidden superpowers and new abilities.

He hopes to share yoga with others and help them to rediscover their own strength, both physical and emotional.

Mark Abbott

Mark discovered meditation whilst living in India for over ten years and during that time traveled extensively, experiencing many different methods under various teachers. Since then a regular practice of meditation has brought him more peace of mind, increased clarity and focus in all walks of life, and has proven particularly helpful most recently when leaving the corporate world behind to follow his passion as a writer. Just as in the practice of Yoga, meditation strengthens the mind-body connection and provides significant physical and mental health benefits. A regular practice helps one to connect to their true self and provides valuable ‘me” time in a world where we are increasingly distracted.

His wish is for everyone to experience the same joy, inner transformation and profound benefits that he has found through a simple daily practice.

Marie Bonnat

Marie worked as a psychologist in Paris. Then she travelled around the world by herself during few years. That’s how she met her husband, father of her 2 lovely children. They kept traveling together for few more years and settled down in Hong Kong in 2016.

She first started yoga to recover from her 2nd pregnancy. She quickly discovered the powerful benefits of her practice on the quality of her breath and started to feel her body stronger and more flexible.

For Marie, yoga is a beautiful invitation to explore her body and to get more intimate with herself. It teaches her how to stay connected to her breath and to be fully in the present moment. Practicing on daily bases helps her to calm down and to go through the challenges of life more peacefully.

Marie completed the 200 hours teacher training course with Chaukei Ngai in 2018. She really
enjoys practicing and teaching within this nice community Chaukei managed to create with YogaUP.

She likes to share in her classes the idea that so much is possible as soon as we start to truly welcome ourself with compassion and love.

Marsha Yip

Born and grown in Hong Kong, Marsha is a corporate PR well-trained to set plans and multi-task. She first started yoga as a workout for stress relief, and slowly fell in love with how yoga teaches her to slow down and do one thing at a time. She felt so grateful that yoga has found her before the darkest time in life when she faced the devastating loss of key family members. The healing power of yoga has drawn her deeply to this amazing lifelong journey.

Marsha completed her 200-hr RYT certification with Patrick Creelman and Rinat Perlman with strong focus on alignments in Iyengar style. She is also completing another 30-hour Yin teacher training with David Kim. Her teaching style is dynamic and strong, with an aim to help students build strength and flexibility with correct postures for the maximum safety and benefits. She loves encouraging students to challenge themselves with an energizing Yang sequence, while adding some Yin poses to class to create a more balanced experience.

Nicola Belen

Marie Bonnat

Nicola grew up in Hong Kong. She began her yoga practice here at Planet Yoga and Pure Yoga in her mid-twenties. What began as another form of physical exercise would become a spiritual awakening and a way of life. As Nicola learned of the many aspects of yoga beyond the asana practice, she felt the pull to do her teacher training. In 2011, while living in San Francisco she took her 200hr teacher training at the Laughing Lotus College of Yoga.

Soon after graduating she became pregnant and discovered the magic of prenatal yoga. Eventually, she would do her prenatal teacher training with the same woman whose classes she had attended while pregnant. Nicola believes that her practice prepared her mentally and physically for birth and that yoga has continued to guide her through the many ups and downs of motherhood.

Nicola teaches prenatal and vinyasa. She believes that no matter where you are in life, yoga can serve you to bring you into balance. She encourages all her students to drop out of their “monkey minds” while on the mat, to use the breath as a tool to anchor oneself in the present moment, and through the movement of the body to discover one’s true self.

She bows to her teachers, Jasmine Tarkeshi, Keith Borden, Jane Austin and Cynthea Denise.

Olivia Pesce

Olivia grew up in France and traveled in Spain and England for her Study in Business administration. Before she found her real passion for yoga, she practiced as Area Manager in the fashion Industry in Italy and Australia. She discovered Yoga in Australia in 2002, She has always been in the sport, particularly in Ballet and Modern Dance. Yoga helped her find strength and balance for the body and mind.

She moved to Hong Kong in 2014 and completed her 200 hours TTC and Advanced level 1 with the International Yoga Academy (IYA) under the guidance of Master Yogananth Andiappan in 2015. She now makes her yoga practice her life journey. She shares her passion with everybody because she believes yoga connects us all. Through teaching yoga, she continues to grow her practice and learn a deeper knowledge of yoga.

Olivia is currently assistant for the Andiappan Yoga Community and remains an active volunteer in the community’s yoga program for overseas workers and low-income families

Rhiann Suen

Rhiann Suen

Rhiann Suen received her training and certifications in San Diego, California.

She specializes in Vinyasa, Restorative, Yin and Cancer Yoga Therapy.
Recently moved back to her hometown Hong Kong, she is inspired and dedicated to sharing her passion and deep love of practicing and teaching yoga, to empower people to become the better version of themselves, both on and off the mat.

Sally Tse

Being a magazine editor in digital media, Sally has a super fast-paced and hectic work life. Thanks to Yoga she learns to slow down, and grateful to have found inner peace and tranquility in the chaotic world. From the stillest Pranayama(breathing) exercise to the most vigorous Asana(posture) practice, Sally sees Yoga as an essential part in her awakening journey, a path to eternal happiness and the Truth. That is just one of the many reasons why she has a deep passion on Yoga.

Sally first met Yoga in 2002 and started practicing Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga in 2014, from which she sees the beauty in dedication and the connection in breaths with movements. Having a vision to share the precious ancient wisdom of Yoga, she completed the 200-hour Yoga Alliance Certified Teacher Training with ChauKei Ngai at YogaUP in early 2018.

Sally loves inviting her students to breathe, listen to the body and enjoy the class, to experience the union of mind and body, and to explore the wonderful inner world.

Sophie Martin

In 2012, Sophie traveled to India and discovered yoga. She loved the calming feeling of it and the fact that it was unifying the body, the soul, and the mind.
She then started to practice on and off in Hong Kong while enjoying two pregnancies and two beautiful babies.

She really got into her practice thanks to ChauKei in YogaUp where she took her 200 hours Yoga Teacher Training in 2018.

When she was younger, Sophie also did a corporeal mime school and somehow she finds a link between the two practices: “making visible the invisible”.

She intends her classes to be playful and creative and she wishes her students to leave their mats feeling more anchored and closer to themselves.

Veronica Perenzoni

Veronica grew up in Italy. She had been traveling around the world for most of her life as a flight attendant first, then following her husband’s job since 2010.

She initially approached pre-natal yoga during her pregnancy then she started practicing it daily from late 2016 in Hong Kong, where she settled with her family in September 2015.

She attended the 200Hrs Yoga Alliance Certified Training with Chaukei Ngai at YogaUp Studio in early 2018. She believes through yoga we should feed the natural connection between mind and body. Yoga is everyone, independently from age, sex and body type. The constant practice is the foundation for maintaining the mind’s strength while invigorating the body.

She has always been a dynamic and positive person with a peaceful and relaxed lifestyle which is now the added value she brings in her yoga practice